Reaching your goals by keeping a health log

Fit & Training door thijs

Every Fit Girl has her wishes and goals, but sometimes they may seem hard to reach. In general, progress in fitness & health is a slow process. In most cases, you won’t see the results within a week. It takes several weeks, even months, to see your hard work paying off. That's why a health log might help you to have a clear plan, see your progress and to stay motivated.

What exactly is a health log?

Well, to me it’s kind of a diary, but focused on your healthy lifestyle. You can make it as personal as you want. You can choose to only write about your body composition, but you also could write down what you ate, how many calories you burned, which exercises you did in your strength training, etc. When you have issues with food or self-worth (for example: binge eating or feeling bad about your body), a health log also could be a perfect tool to help put things into perspective.

How do I use my health log?

I started my health log by setting my goals. I wrote my goals on the first pages of my diary. For me, my main goal is living a balanced & active life. Besides that, I want to lower my fat percentage and improve my muscle percentage. After setting concrete goals, I did some measurements & wrote down the results of my body composition. Nowadays I write what I ate & sometimes what I felt about it.

I also measure my body composition about once a week (but sometimes once a week becomes once a month ;-) ). At the start of each week, I make a week plan for my workouts. Because I sometimes work out twice a day, it’s important to have a balanced schedule with a good mix between HIIT and LISS workouts. For me this health log really helps me to stay focused on my goals. When I had a (few) bad day(s), I use this tool to put things in perspective and see where I stand and most important: what I learned from it. For me this health log is a great way to stay motivated!

Why tracking your food may help you reaching your health goals

I think tracking your food is one of the most important things when you have goals that are related to body composition. In my opinion you can’t out exercise a bad diet. When your results are not the way you want it, you could read back in your health log what you ate and analyze if you didn’t eat the way you should. The simple rule is Weight loss = calorie intake – kcal burned. If you want to lose fat/weight, you should eat less calories than you burn. It’s that simple!

Why you should track your workouts

Tracking your workouts is very useful, especially when you want to gain muscle (strength). To gain muscles, it’s important that you really challenge yourself to that point when you feel like you really can’t do the exercise anymore. Your muscles should feel sore at the end of a specific exercise. When they’re not, you probably didn’t train your muscle strength (and you probably won’t gain mucles). Tracking your workouts give you an insight of your progress, which can be very motivating!

Don’t overdo it.

I’m not a big fan of getting obsessed with things (whatever it is). Remember that a health log can be a tool for tracking your progress in health & fitness. It’s not a necessity that you need to do every single day and you shouldn’t feel stressed about it anyway. Of course keeping a health log is a way to control your progress, but this shouldn’t control you! Go with the flow and don’t overdo it. It’s a tool, not a necessity. And most important: don’t become angry with yourself when you skipped workout or had a bad day (or even a bad week). Every Fit Girl has those days, it makes you human! :)